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adamrice


adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA

Total posts: 1015
Posted: As a newcomer to staff, one thing I'm having trouble with is finding smooth transitions between spinning in a vertical plane and a horizontal plane.

Any tips?


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falloutboy
SILVER Member since Mar 2002

falloutboy

remember
Location: Melbourne, Australia, Earth, M...

Total posts: 433
Posted:wow.. that's freaky - i was planning on posting the exact same question!
So, anyone?

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[ 18 April 2002, 02:05: Message edited by: falloutboy ]


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[Nx?]
BRONZE Member since Nov 2001

[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both

Total posts: 3749
Posted:yo,

been talkin about this today with minero, hes got a crazy capoera kik thig but I wont go into that here...

I think its always nice to transition btb, so, backwards figure eights in fron tof you, passing from hand to hand, so staff onna left pass to right hand pull across to the right, pass to left hand ect...

eg right hand has just passed the staff to the left hand on the right side and as the staff comes across the body rotate the plane into horisontaland continue round the back where you pass to the right hand and above your head. presto!

similary, comming back left hand takes horisontal staff btb and passing to the right force into vertical backwards and handwrap it, very satisfing.

of course you can just go backward in one hand and tuck it under the arm to above the head without passing, but its not nearly so fun

unfortunatly for continious transition you have to force it whatever but if you like you can tuck the staff under your arm to stall it for a fraction and then pull it out horisontal. works back the way too.

hope this helps!

N


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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pozee
BRONZE Member since Jul 2001

old hand
Location: san diego, USA

Total posts: 887
Posted:i dont do doubles, but i know what you mean. it is almost impossible to switch the planes without forcing it a bit. its kind of like going from a weave to a corckscrew, know what i mean...

anyone got a light?

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PK_
BRONZE Member since Dec 2001

PK_

Lambretta Fanatic
Location: United Kingdom

Total posts: 4995
Posted:you should ask tempest about doubles
he's prolly one of the best spinners i have seen with doubles... seems to know his shit too!
pk


PK.

"To be an angel, one need not have wings.
In giving love there is an equal grace.
Nor need one seek the aura in the face,
As love unveils the beauty of all things."

*Francois Couperin.

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bec
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

bec

member
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australi...

Total posts: 521
Posted:The original question was for just single staff, yes?

There are a number of ways to make this kind of transition smooth...

The way that I usually teach this first is to link between 2 very similar moves which have an element in common -

eg
the horizontal spin above the head (helicopter?) coming down to a straight pass behind the back
and
the same thing on the verticle plane
ie spinning circles in front (sorry Charles and everyone I haven't worked through the official definitions and assimilated them yet) with a straight pass behind the back

a simple way to make the transition between these two is just to move from the circles at front, pass behind the back and as you come out of the pass behind, move up above your head for a helicopter spin...

any other set of combination moves should work as long as they combine a horiz. & vert. move with something else in common...

all the best with it - hope this helps..*
Bec


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Cantus
SILVER Member since Jul 2001

Cantus

Tantamount to fatuity
Location: Down the road, United Kingdom

Total posts: 15965
Posted:Whereas Bec has written a book about Staff Spinning.
I've learnt more off her than I have off Tempest. Not trying to be nasty to Liam. Just thought I'd mention it.....


"I'll carry this....It's harder to spill a hat" - Chellybean
"...like a rabbit caught in a lighthouse?" - Chellybean

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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 2830
Posted:With practice, I think all the transitions can become smooth, especially when the wrist becomes flexible.

OK, there are a few in the helicopter thread . And here a few I do. The explanations may be a little dodgy, but the won't get any better if I don't try.

The classic. From an anti-clockwise rotor in front, take the staff in the left hand and move it around to the left, behind the back. Pass the staff to the right hand btb (staff now travelling right). Bring the staff up and around the body to the front for a full nelson around the neck. The staff is passed to the left on completion of the full nelson. Continue up into a helicopter. Alternative, skip the full nelson and go straight into the helicopter. Similarly, when doing a vertical windmill (btb), start to bend the wrist when the staff is about shoulder high and go above the head and into a helicopter.

From an anti-clockwise rotor in front, grasp the staff in the right hand and take the staff to the right, at hip level. Take the staff btb by bending and rolling the wrist, thumb leading. For this bit, the back of the wrist faces the body, and remain fairly close to the hip.

Once around the back, push down on the staff with the wrist (thumb), while at the same time pulling the arm up, and around to the front, for a helicopter. Can also be done with the little finger leading, but out a bit wider. Cheers


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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adamrice


adamrice

poo-bah
Location: Austin TX USA

Total posts: 1015
Posted:Yes, my original question was about singles. What Bec suggests (I like the book, btw) is kind of what I've been doing, but it's still awkward. My staff has a lot of momentum behind it, which I'm sure makes it harder to change planes.

I've got some ideas I need to play around with now.

[ 19 April 2002, 13:21: Message edited by: adamrice ]


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TopHat


member
Location: Adelaide, South Australia, Aus...

Total posts: 34
Posted:If you spin vertically behind your back, lean forward and take the staff with you. Sort of like the Enterprise at the Royal show. I don't know how to explain it, easier done then said.

Ouch! Eep! Damn Leg Hair stop getting in the way!

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[Nx?]
BRONZE Member since Nov 2001

[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both

Total posts: 3749
Posted:hi,

remembered that i really like this...

do you know the backwards spinning sloulder roll? when you give an extra beat infront and tuck the front under your arm? well I find that position very natural to alter the plane because of the vay my wrist moves, it posativly wants to do it. pass btb and your away.

N


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Stone
GOLD Member since Jun 2001

Stream Entrant
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 2830
Posted:A firm handed may be needed, but I don't think you have to muscle these transitions.

Transition 1: Take the staff up from a two-handed rotor in front, to a two handed heli or one handed palm spin.

Transition 2: From a outward Fig 8, bringing the staff in-front of the body from behind. Thumb end leading (actually, I'm leading with my index finger stretched out along the staff). Do part of a rotation in front, the staff should be rotating clockwise. When the thumb end is pointing straight up (vertical) continue the rotation, letting the momentum of the staff lead a bit, and the staff should go up and out to the right, but still in front of the body. Start to rotate your wrist when the staff is shoulder high, continue up and the staff should end up spinning in a horizontal plane.

Transition 3: I agree with Nix. The key to smooth transitions is all in the wrist movement that comes from the full shoulder roll with extra spin. While doing outward Fig 8's, try winding your wrist right up when the staff is behind the body, then bring the staff forward and unwind your wrist in front. When the staff kinda rests (momentarily) in the crook the wrist and the end of arm, take the staff up to the horizontals. Normally, you would go behind, but in this case you take your arm up, and start a horizontal movement by winding the wrist up again. Me thinks, full shoulder rolls with extra spin are very similar to the snake club moves, in that you get two circles in front from a forward full shoulder rolls with extra spin.

Anyone got a continuous butterfly with doubles by slipping in a hand wrap (roll?)? Might try this tonight. Hope this makes sense. Cheers


If we as members of the human race practice meditation, we can transcend our fear, despair, and forgetfulness. Meditation is not an escape. It is the courage to look at reality with mindfulness and concentration. Thich Nhat Hanh

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Charles
BRONZE Member since Jun 2001

Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Total posts: 3989
Posted:Wow! Such a lot of helpful staff people, I think I've died and gone to...

Oh never mind. Adam. There's a lot of good advice there, although I can see that few of them have answered your question directly.

It wasn't until i started teaching staff that I noticed the way I prefer to do transitions.

When doing figure8 type moves, there will be parts of the pattern where the staff stays in one place for a short moment, spinning only in its own plane (i.e. the arm holding it stays still but the staff is still spinning). This point is the easiest to translate into a different plane as opposed to when the staff has spin and direction (spinning and arm holding it is moving in a specific direction, such as from your left to your right).

It's also easier to change planes by turning your body slightly and pulling backwards against the direction of movement. This encourages the staff to move upwards or downwards and it seems to 'forget' what plane it was originally in more easily.

does that make sense, i always have trouble putting it into words?


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Rozi
SILVER Member since Jan 2002

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Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia

Total posts: 2996
Posted:Wow, Charles, that made so much sense. I can really picture it Cool!!!

Everyone has covered the ones I am doing at the moment. So new question, I am currently doing a figure 8 with an extra spin on the left hand side (when holding the staff in my right), by turning my hand an extra 180 on the right hand side and un-twisting it on the left. But I am having real trouble doing smooth transitions from this to anything (btb etc). Any tips?

R.


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Tempest


addict
Location: Sheffield

Total posts: 522
Posted:Hi guys, cheers for the compliment PK but transition changes are not my strong thing, I tend to prefer those pesky beats.

Saying that, I have a friend that does a lot of Rope Dart stuff and longarm moves with staff that is really organic.
If you want to change planes, don't make your left and right or top and bottom circles quite so parrallel. Plus, if you hold the staff just an inch or so off centre - it gives you a little momentum wherever you need it. I like the one's that Bec mentioned, Cantus - you got a copy I can have a gander at?
I have been finally tring to do palmspins and if you wait till it has stopped before taking it down to the side it makes a nice transition from helicopters to rotors.

Anybody managing to flow from 2 beat weaves through the horizontal planes and back? I can turn em ok until I try and flatten - Hy head hurts, and my eye! My ear will be next if you don't help me.

TEMPEST


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[Nx?]
BRONZE Member since Nov 2001

[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both

Total posts: 3749
Posted:I was going to put this in the flourish section but what the hey...

I know what Tempest is on about, thats a lot of my style at the moment, most fun with long fairly heavy sticks. What first got me in to it was a transition where the staff is spinning backwards and passed over the back to the otherside of the body. once caught in the lower hand you turn away from the hand with the staff and bring the long arm round trailing. This can be passed for a double sweep or taken under the arm for back wrap or whatever. The only trouble is that you kneed good wicks because its so fast it tends to put anything out.

Nice noise but. hummmmmm

N


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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Wikkaman


member
Location: The Birthplace of BlackSabbath

Total posts: 259
Posted:What is the name of this book of which you speak?

The answer is never the answer. What's really interesting is the mystery. If you seek the mystery instead of the answer, you'll always be seeking. I've never seen anybody really find the answer-- they think they have, so they stop thinking. But the job is to seek mystery, evoke mystery, plant a garden in which strange plants grow and mysteries bloom. The need for mystery is greater than the need for an answer.-- Ken Kesey

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TheBovrilMonkey
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

TheBovrilMonkey

Liquid Cow
Location: High Wycombe, England

Total posts: 2629
Posted:I'm only guessing, but I think this is the book that's been mentioned. It certainly helped me with learning the few staff moves I can actually do at the moment - it's helping even more now I can use both hands

But there's no sense crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

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bec
BRONZE Member since Jan 2001

bec

member
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australi...

Total posts: 521
Posted:yep... "The Fire Twirling Book" that Malcolm sells through the shop

It's all staff-based moves... from the very basics...through to intermediate and some more advanced stuff too... enjoy...*


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Tanessa


member
Location: Canada

Total posts: 91
Posted:Almost anytime you do a release and catch (say a 1 spin), you can instant;y change the plane. If you want the transition, you'll have to find out what feels the smoothest to you. I personally like doing continual handtwirls in fron of me while leaning into a back bend (bringing the arms up). That way when you staighten out from your back bend (or just leaning far back), you've already made the succesful transition. It doesn't matter how hast the hand twirls are, but the back bend must be slow to smoothly break the plane. If I'm in a hurry to break it, I go from a simple hand twirl right to left, then a straight break into a pass horizontally behind and around the back (waist) from left to right, then keeping the horizontal plane going. You can do that same move if you want to do the dash just back and forth for an odd, but cool looking move (vert. hand twirl, horiz pass behind back,).

I'm sure your friends book will help out lots as well.


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[Nx?]
BRONZE Member since Nov 2001

[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both

Total posts: 3749
Posted:Thanks to minero for this one, Id thought he'd put it up but to busy I expect...

staff backwards spinning passes btb left to right (over the shoulder) left hand then brings staff up between legs, bring right leg across left cradling staff and moving to the horisontal plane, catch again with left hand. s'wicked.

N


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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Bender_the_Offender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

Bender_the_Offender

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:Hey nix, sick! thanks for the horizontal transfer involving legs - nice!
all of my leg catches are btb, I have not considered front leg malarky yet... wOOt!

My 2 AU cents is that the staves follow the body. if the body does not twist, the staves change planes with awkwardness. If the body is twisting alot, the staves simply follow it.
don't simply stand there: reflective walls + mirrors and personal practice footage is a must for development in body oragami - what seems clean to the twirler can be seen as 'imperfect' or 'Nutella' to the observer.
Minero must have sickass plane transfers being a capoeirista - I find incorporation of it into twirling to be difficult as many capoeira moves require whipping arms into different directions for momentum, and that becomes a facially damaging problem.

"I will bend like a reed"
- Muad'Dib


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Charles
BRONZE Member since Jun 2001

Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Total posts: 3989
Posted:Bender_Offender - That is one way to look at transitions, however, you'll also find that you can examine the path and techniques used to allow transitions in the opposite direction to body torque and pirouettes etc.

Noting how a very light twist from the center as the leading edge dips up or down from vertical can give a whole new range of transitions without relying on body-pulls to facilitate plane changes.

Combining both your body techniques and path-timing will give you a huge number of choices whilst spinning.

I've found path-timing essential for doing transitions with double staffs, which doesn't mean they are th eonly choice, but something I enjoy working with, as body moves are harder to use to influence both staffs to do different patterns at the same time...

ANyone else with some other tips to add to th elist...?


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Bender_the_Offender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

Bender_the_Offender

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:heyyas inferno! you be right - my focus in transitions has always been with the flow of the body and totally ignoring your idea of transitions against the body's direction. Now i can't wait for tonight's practice (9-5 hours says I do! )
I would love to hear and expansion on the 'path-timing' concept.
It is such a luxury to have someone on this board have sooo many staff principles down pat, with concise, logical concepts elaborated as clearly as this! lord knows that with text based instruction that we need clarity of expression. dammit man if i have a kid I'll call him obi-wan. I have another kid it might be charles!!


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Mineiro


member
Location: Edinburgh

Total posts: 262
Posted:just one to add to the leg transition... if you let the staff make one more turn round the leg you can catch it in the right leg btb, then flick back up into vertical...

Rob


brain replacement...anyone?

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Charles
BRONZE Member since Jun 2001

Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Total posts: 3989
Posted:Path-timing is a complex sounding name, I just made it up before as a text-based term for how I view transition "windows" within staff patterns.

For example, when doing a basic Figure 8, if the staff left it's own image, (Like the Blame it on the Boogy Video by the jackson five), then you would have two plates or discs in the air, intersecting each other at the crossover point.

Like two cymbals stuck into each other.

It's at that crossover point, where the cymbals are stuck, that requires the least force to change direction or go into another move during a figure 8. Well, actually, it ties with the points when the cymbals are at their furthest point at the other ends of the pattern to.

But, if you get what I mean, path timing is consciously being aware of the time inside a pattern where the staff is easier to change than the rest of the time.

Does that make sense?


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Bender_the_Offender
GOLD Member since Nov 2001

Bender_the_Offender

still can't believe it's not butter
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Total posts: 6979
Posted:Mr McCain ya done it again!
Path timing IMO is a good name, cus your description does match what that name implies. cymbals! Jackson-5 afterimages (I can't stop smirking)! what a colourfully descriptive way of describing a path! I will use that in teaching - there are many people who are awesome at technicalities, yet are tosspots at teaching. Inferno, dude, you are the *master* at text instruction, and if you're at the HoP gathering ima gunna haveta shake ya hand and grovel like John Howard in the Bundestag!


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o-o


member
Location: london, england

Total posts: 78
Posted:ummm, charles, transition planes with 2 staves how? i mean, when i try it, it not only feels wrong (i can do loads with one easily and have no problem understanding your lingo) but it sometimes wrenches the shoulders ? am i just twirling staves too heavy? plus, they are prolly too long :/

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Charles
BRONZE Member since Jun 2001

Charles

Corporate Circus Arts Entertainer
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Total posts: 3989
Posted:Doubles, especially long doubles (long doubles are my speciality), do give the body a bit of a hard time.

If you hold a single staff in one hand and do a few moves, you can feel your shoulder and neck muscles moving around on that side of your body.

With doubles, both shoulders and back and neck muscles (as well as arms etc etc) are being used at the same time and that is pretty tiring and hard fopr the body to deal with in the beginning.

The only advice that I'm aware of at this point is to go SLOW. Give the muscles time to build up by not trying to do the moves really fast.

As for transitions, it's more of a mind game (like rubbing your stomach and patting your head) than anything else.

It's easy to do similar patterns, either simultaneously or following each other. What is difficult is getting one arm to follow a seperate pattern, such as a slow, gentle FIGURE8, and then making the other staff do a seperate move, such as a finger spin, hand wraps etc.

Give it go, at some point, you will be able to forget about the pattern the other hand is doing and focus on doing new things with the other hand.

As usual, this is the method I've had the most success with teaching others, it may or may not suit your own learning style...

Cheers


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[Nx?]
BRONZE Member since Nov 2001

[Nx?]

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Europe,Scotland,Both

Total posts: 3749
Posted:just to say..

the fishtail trasitions really easily into horisontal, fact its hard to make it not do, looks very floaty but can run away from you.

N


This is a post by tom, all spelling is deleberate
-><- Kallisti

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Spyke
BRONZE Member since Feb 2002

member
Location: Wageningen, Australia

Total posts: 28
Posted:A transition i've been using alot lately invloves a fwd fig 8 wiht the right hand and tucking the leading end up under your shoulder, where your other hand is waiting to give a quick push around into horizontal spin with right hand, the leading edge having come under your shoulder to hoizontal then spun horizontally out to the rhs into the hor spin.
This actually smooths out into a gentle but quick transition.
Spyke


'At this moment, you should be with us, feeling like we do, like you loved to, but never will again.'

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